I just read this morning on our daily lesson call and at its end, I reread an excerpt from two paragraphs, five and eight.
The first was “While you practice in this way, you leave behind everything that you now believe, and all the thoughts that you have made up. Properly speaking, this is the release from hell. Yet perceived through the ego’s eyes, it is the loss of identity and a descent into hell.” Paragraph 5.
This is not the only time Jesus states that we have to leave everything behind, that is, the identity we know and love or think we do. In The Song of Prayer, his term is “Lay down your dreams.” In lesson 190, it is “Lay down your arms.” Basically, he lovingly implores us to release our attachments to our idols, addictions, “children’s toys” which are all reflections of specialness, separation and separate interests.
Yesterday, I was sort of watching a program that features that latest in the political realm. Several tweets of a certain party were mentioned, they were quite blistering of some opposing party’s candidates as they officially announced they were running for the highest office in the country.
I found myself thinking, “What has our beloved country come to?”, those relentless, unflattering and debasing tweets drive me insane and, all too often, deeply into exasperation, condemnation and judgment. It takes a nano-second to descend into darkness at the same level I have accessed this individual to be.
Is this what I want? Ah, I see, it is all too easy to project my deeply unconscious sense of guilt and sin onto others I see who demonstrate behavior or attitudes that I find unacceptable and I certainly am resistant to acknowledging I do the same thing I am accusing this other individual of, albeit in different form.
Ah, here we go again, content versus form. The content of my thoughts do not differ from this individual’s, the form, yes, content, no. UGH!
OH, and if it’s not the political arena, I can easily project my guilt for separating from God that has to go somewhere, anywhere, so as NOT to experience it, onto advertisements from pharmaceutical or insurance companies; you know, those two minute ads for the latest prescription drugs where the consequences might be suicide or death, as an example.
The other paragraph from which I read at the call’s conclusion was paragraph eight:
“…What is needful is a sense of the importance of what you are doing; its inestimable value to you, and an awareness that you are attempting something very holy. Salvation is your happiest accomplishment. It is the only one that has any meaning, because it is the only one that has any real use to you at all.”
OK, well, today, as I reflect upon what I just wrote, I am willing, just a little, to acknowledge how quickly I can go back and forth, from truth to falsity, from love to hate, from miracles to murder and celebrate the fact that I have these most elegant tools to experience the light and love of God, to experience true vision by releasing every value I hold that keeps me in the prison of my own making. God is the light in which I see if I so choose and if I am willing to practice as directed while also acknowledging I will resist.
Love to all,